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Spurs Odyssey Preview - Spurs v Derby - 18.08.07

This week - last year
What happened in the Premiership in Match 3 2006-07

NEW! - See the current injury list for all Premiership Teams!

Full Record of Spurs -v- Derby County

Premier Pl W D L F - A Pts Home 6 3 3 0 10 - 5 12 Away 6 2 0 4 6 - 9 6 ======================================= Total (Prem) 12 5 3 3 16 -13 18 ======================================= Football Lge Home (Div 1) 24 13 4 7 41 -25 31 Away (Div 1) 24 3 8 13 29 -60 16 ======================================= Total(Div 1) 48 16 12 20 70 -85 47 ======================================= Football Lge Home (Div 2) 1 0 1 0 0 - 0 1 Away (Div 2) 1 0 1 0 1 - 1 1 ======================================= Total(Div 2) 2 0 2 0 1 - 1 2 ======================================= Total (Prem) 12 5 3 3 16 -13 18 Total (Div1) 48 16 12 20 70 -85 47 Total (Div2) 2 0 2 0 1 - 1 2 ======================================= Grand Total 62 21 17 24 87 -100 67 =======================================

Last Six Premiership results:-


M'brough   2-3   Spurs
Charlton   0-2   Spurs
Spurs      1-1   Blackburn
Spurs      2-1   Man City
S'derland  1-0   Spurs
Spurs      1-3   Everton

Includes Championship Play-Off games

Derby      2-0   Leeds
S'hampton  1-2   Derby
Derby      2-3   S'hampton
Derby      1-0   West Brom
Derby      2-2   P'tsmouth
Man City   1-0   Derby

Pos        P  W  D  L  F-A  GD  Pts
14  Derby  2  0  1  1  2-3  -1   1
20  Spurs  2  0  0  2  1-4  -3   0
Last Five corresponding fixtures:-

15.10.01 Spurs 3 Derby 1
21.10.00 Spurs 3 Derby 1
29.04.00 Spurs 1 Derby 1
27.02.99 Spurs 1 Derby 1
23.08.97 Spurs 1 Derby 0

It's not the first time in recent years that Spurs have lost their first two Premiership games. In 1998 they lost 3-1 at Wimbledon (3 months after so crucially beating them 6-2!), and then 3-0 at home to Sheffield Wednesday. If you are looking for an omen though, you just need to go back one more year, when we met Derby on 23rd August, 1997, and beat them 1-0 thanks to a Calderwood goal. Jose Dominguez made a spectacular debut as substitute that day. Spurs had lost at home to Man Utd and at West Ham prior to this win. The bad news is that we did go on to endure a relegation battle. That is not going to be the case this year!

Derby have made their return to the Premiership after an absence of 5 full seasons, and are one of the favourites to make an immediate return to Chamiponship level. They have of course given battling performances in their first two games, and do have one more point than Spurs at present!

There must be a generation of Spurs fans out there that do not realise how formidable a force Brian Clough and our own legendary Dave Mackay made The Rams in the early seventies, with two League Championships. The first was won in the 71-72 season with Clough the manager, and then Mackay repeated the achievement in 74-75, having been Captain of Clough's second division Champions' side in 1968-9. When we travel to Derby in February, you can expect to find references in their programme to a soul-destroying 8-2 defeat in October 1976, and also to their dramatic 5-3 FA Cup win at White Hart Lane in 1973.

It can truly be said that neither Derby County or Nottingham Forest have been the forces they were in football, under the command of the late Brian Clough, but at least Derby are back in the big time now, and as far as they are concerned - not just to make up the numbers either!

Despite their yo-yo tendencies in recent years, Derby have still been a thorn in Spurs' side - especially at Pride Park, where we did lose our last Premiership game 1-0. It was October 2001 when we last entertained the East Midlands side, and won 3-1 with goals by Les Ferdinand, Christian Ziege, and Gus Poyet. Fabrizio Ravanelli scored the Derby goal. In my match report for that game, I wrote that "Spurs so dominated this game it was like watching a cat toying with a captured mouse", and in the current situation we need any win, but a dominant performance would help to dispel the waves of depression over Spurs' fans' heads.

Derby made a satisfying start at home to Portsmouth last week, and lost to a solitary goal at in-form Man City on Wednesday night. Their squad is un-spectacular, but manager Billy Davies does have his men fully motivated and working hard (which does not appear to be the situation to date with our boys), and they will present a stern enough test for Martin Jol's makeshift side.

Derby's star man and former Spurs target Giles Barnes is their only absentee, but he is out for 4 more weeks. So, who can we look out for in this Saturday's game? Up front we are likely to see former Luton striker Steve Howard - big and beefy, but not too fast, alongside Rob Earnshaw, signed from Norwich and who had previous Premiership experience with West Bromwich Albion. Former Southampton midfielder Matt Oakley will have taken great pleasure from his goal last week against Portsmouth, and in defence, Andy Griffin will have enjoyed Andy Todd's spectacular equaliser against his former team.

Andy Todd and big Darren Moore are just two more Derby players with Premiership credentials.

Spurs are level top of the Premier League injury table, with Dimitar Berbatov and Younes Kaboul joining Ledley King, Michael Dawson, Ekotto, and Lennon on the injury list. Spurs tell us that Gareth Bale and Young-Pyo Lee have today returned to full training, but I would be surprised if that qualifies them to take part in Saturday's game.

Whilst we hope and pray for a swift return for Michael Dawson, I fear he will not be ready. I would like to see a team with some natural width and pace (guile would be handy too) and would settle for Robbo; Chim, Rocha, Gardner, Zokora (covered at left back late on Tuesday); Routledge, Jenas, Hudd, Taarabt; Bent, Defoe. What - no Keane? Well of course, Big Marty will play him and leave Taarabt on the bench if he's lucky. He'll probably play Tainio instead of Routledge too, so maybe we'kll have to rely on Huddlestone to chip some decent balls over the defence for Bent and Defoe (if he can time his runs right).

I desperately want Spurs to win, and I am predicting a 3-1. Defeat would surely put incredible, and possibly insurmountable pressure upon the popular Martin Jol, but we have difficult games to come, and anything less than three points here could be a personal disaster for our manager.

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